Here in Vancouver, University of British Columbia psychologist Stanley Coren 9 describes sleep deprivation studies in humans showing a number of ominous effects, and his book Sleep Thieves: An eye-opening exploration into the science and mysteries of sleep generally comes to the conclusion that everyone needs to take sleep deprivation much more seriously than we generally do.
Here are several examples:. This is just a sampling. For a complete discussion of how insomnia probably increases body pain of all kinds and muscle pain in particular , see Insomnia Until it Hurts. Delayed sleep phase syndrome DSPS is a sleep problem with a neurological cause and probably genetic roots. People with DSPS are not just night owls: they really are unable to fall asleep until later.
With DSPD, the body clock is not just delayed, it is also relatively carved in stone. Some insomnia is caused by sleep disorders such as DSPS, sleep apnea, or seriously narcolepsy. But a great deal of insomnia is basically just a bad habit — a learned behaviour, which is usually aggravated into a crisis by emotional stresses 22 or by other medical problems. I resisted this idea at first. Actually, I strongly resented it for a long time. I certainly did not feel like I had a bad habit.
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I felt like a victim of some terrible malfunction of my central nervous system. But it turns out I was just a guy with a bad habit, and the proof was in the results. Granted, it was a really bad habit — or several of them — but it really did come down to just learning how to sleep again. The cure was ultimately simple, and consisted of a simple 2-point plan: Step one just paves the way, and is mainly a determined application of common sense …. All the behavioural condition in the world will be useless if you sleep in bright, noisy, stuffy bedroom with a snoring spouse and a pesky cat.
Cover your windows with blackout curtains. Install sound-proofing eggshell foam. Find more comfortable earplugs. Get an air conditioner or a dehumidifier. Kick the dog out of bed. Get a squirt bottle and wage war on the cat until she learns that waking you up at AM is going to get her nothing but soaking wet.
Use a white noise machine or a fan. Buy the best mattress money can buy, get a deluxe pillow, and thread count sheets. Fix the leaky tap. Get rid of the phone too: permanently eliminate the possibility of it ever waking you up at AM again.
End the Insomnia Struggle - Sleep Review
Why not? People have transplanted themselves across oceans and continents for much less: jobs, boyfriends, and better scenery. Sleep is a complex human behaviour, and insomnia is a dysfunctional sleep behaviour — sleep behaviour that results in sleep that is at odds with what we want, usually not enough of it and at the wrong times. Sleep behaviour is quite variable and adaptable across cultures and situations, and we can learn and unlearn nearly any kind of sleep habit.
And yet of course not all sleep hygiene actually works well. That adaptability can work for or against us: it is easy to inadvertently teach ourselves sleeping habits with unpleasant long term consequences. It is less easy to deliberately teach ourselves better ones. Without a doubt, my readers mostly suffer from civilization-induced insomnia. That is, they have learned bad sleeping habits that are strongly associated with an electrical world.
But there are a thousand sneaky ways in which you teach your brain not to go to sleep. Most insomniacs, when they have trouble falling sleep, get frustrated, get up, and do something. This is dangerous. Depending on the activity, this is a message to your brain. Reading a book. Watching a bit of boring telly. Having a snack.
End the Insomnia Struggle : A Step-by-Step Guide to Help You Get to Sleep and Stay Asleep
You are teaching your nervous system not to sleep, and like the miraculously adaptable thing that it is … it learns. Learning to sleep again is something like training a dog: endless repetition, and positive reinforcement. Only instead of doggy biscuit rewards … your reward is sleep. Behavioural conditioning is most familiar to us in the context of animal training.
People are no better at training themselves, probably even worse. Saying that behavioural insomnia is just a bad habit is like saying that cancer is just a few bad cells. Habits are the most powerful forces in our lives. Learned adaptation is one of the basic organizing principles of our nervous systems. Going up against that is never going to be easy. But it can be done, just like professional animal trainers can get results that seem almost impossible to amateurs.
Your total time in bed may be 9, 10, even 11 or 12 hours sometimes. The problem is that it is not actually possible for anyone — except cats — to consistently sleep solidly through such a long period. Basically, as long as you have a high TTIB, good luck sleeping through the night.
I have often slept in a little to recover from a rough night, but going to bed at pm is actually not a good plan if I actually want to sleep past five or six … which I usually try to do. Although there may be many things that wreck your sleep, TTIB is one of the most controllable and significant aggravating behavioral factors. And TTIB is usually most obviously aggravated by an inconsistent waking time. Many insomniacs get the idea of focusing on getting to bed at a consistent time, but rarely worry about wake time and semi-regularly stay in bed as long as possible trying to recover from the bad night of sleep.
Unfortunately, this simply stretches out your TTIB and strongly reinforces the tendency to wake up in the night. To have any hope of sleeping through the night, you have to have a consistent bedtime and a consistent waking time. Which brings us to sleep compression therapy. Training for recovery from behavioural insomnia is usually most easily cured by restricting sleep to an inadequate, fixed period each night, and then gradually increasing it. The idea of sleep compression therapy is pretty much identical to the logic behind the method used to train a cat not to be a fussy eater, which works like this:.
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Put a small dish of food out … for ten minutes only. After a few missed meals, even the fussiest of all possible cats is going to get hungry enough to eat whatever is in the bowl. By compressing your TTIB into just a few hours, the message to the body is "this is all you're getting, so make the best of it. Sleep compression therapy is the beating heart of this article.
The remaining sections are basically about how to make it better, how to troubleshoot it. It may not work as well … but the need is actually greater. The more difficulty you have sleeping for any reason, the more important it is to have good sleep hygiene. Consider pain, for example. There is no question that it can wreck sleep! A Depression Self Help Guide. Grace Anderson.
Keep regular sleep hours
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You can go to cart and save for later there. Average rating: 0 out of 5 stars, based on 0 reviews Write a review. Colleen Ehrnstrom; Alisha L Brosse. Tell us if something is incorrect. Book Format: Choose an option. Add to Cart. Product Highlights Packed with research-based strategies and practical tools that integrate the physiology of sleep, cognitive behavioral therapy for insomnia CBT-I , and acceptance and commitment therapy ACT , this book will give readers everything they need to change their relationship with sleep—and finally get to sleep and stay asleep, night after night.
About This Item We aim to show you accurate product information. Manufacturers, suppliers and others provide what you see here, and we have not verified it. See our disclaimer. Sleep is one of the most important keys to a healthy lifestyle, yet difficulties with falling asleep, staying asleep, and getting good-quality sleep are growing problems in our culture. End the Insomnia Struggle is a comprehensive, fully customizable guide to help anyone who struggles with insomnia.
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